Monday, June 6, 2011

The One With the Caramel Cake

Today has been deemed "Caramel Cake Day" for a few weeks. We had to think of a sufficient way to celebrate my dear friend Brynn passing her nursing licensure exam. What better way to do it than by making a caramel cake? None that I can think of.

In case you wanted to make a caramel cake of your own, I thought I'd share the process.

Before you get started, make sure you are adequately prepared. This includes going to Safeway and getting the French Salted Caramel Ice Cream they have there. This is an extremely necessary part of the process. You will need to eat this during the preparation and baking ordeal so as not to succumb to starvation.

Also, you will need a recipe, like the one provided below.

Gather your ingredients for the cake:
  •  Butter and flour for greasing pans
  • 2 cups cake flour*
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 7 tbsp butter, softened
  • 1/2 c. egg beater**
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup skim milk
And for the icing you will need:
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
*Did you know that you can substitute cake flour with all purpose flour? For every cup of cake flour required, use 1 cup minus 2 tbsps of all purpose flour and sift well with a whisk.
**In case you're like me and didn't know what egg beaters were, they come in milk-like cartons near the eggs and are sometimes referred to ask "egg substitute". They are supposedly just a healthier version of regular eggs all mixed together.

This is a very secret recipe by Betty Crocker and was passed down to us via a cookbook provided by Brynn's grandmother. So no going and telling everyone you know about this recipe, ok?

To make the cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 2 8-inch round cake pans. Place wax paper in the bottom of the pans and butter and flour paper. Set aside.
  2. Place 1 cup light brown sugar and 7 tbsp butter in large mixing bowl and beat at medium speed until well blended. Add 1/2 cup egg beaters and beat well.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture, alternating additions with 1 cup of milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Mix until well incorporated, but do not over mix. 
  4. Pour half of the batter into each of the cake pans. Bake for 25 minutes. Once a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, they are done. Remove from oven and cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and place on a wire rack to finish cooling.
  5. In the meantime, make the frosting. Combine all ingredients in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil. Cook constantly at boiling point for 2 minutes, until thickened.  Allow to cool (it will thicken up more). Spread 1/3 of the frosting between the two cake layers and use the remainder on the top and sides of the cake. 
It will look delicious. Maybe something like this:

And here is the RN extraordinaire herself with the lovely completed cake. It is quite wonderful, if I do say so myself.

And now I'm off to take the girls on a walk and maybe burn off a few of the calories I acquired during this very delicious process.

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